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Arming the Frontline Manager in the War for Talent

In the grand tradition of Charles Dickens, we are releasing a book serially over the course of this year. The Workforce Institute and our Board of Advisors is collaborating on a series of articles (to become chapters) that will focus on helping companies with significant hourly populations to engage and retain the hourly employees according to the unique retention thresholds they require.

Today's release is "The Role of Frontline Managers in Retaining Hourly Workers". In this article, our board members David Creelman and Steven Hunt discuss a number of best practices that can help organizations to control unwanted turnover through improved management practices including:

  • Refusing to accept that there is nothing you can do to improve voluntary turnover
  • Measuring the performance of frontline managers with respect to their management of turnover
  • Ensuring that corporate issued policies and procedures don't undermine the field manager's ability to retain staff
  • Understanding that hourly workers vary in their motivations and needs to work for your organization - the retiree will be engaged by different management practices than the high school student

One key item Creelman and Hunt touch on in this article is the value of flexible scheduling in retaining hourly employees. Flexible schedules have been a hot topic in the salaried ranks for a while. See David Zinger's recent post on this topic. If you'd like to read a recent Nucleus Report on the benefits of automated employee scheduling, you can download it from

We'd love to hear from those of you who've used flexible scheduling with success in the hourly world.

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